There was a lady who had been married a number of years to a man who had done factory work and he'd been at the shop quite a long time. He had a good retirement program based on his years which allowed him to retire somewhat earlier than he would have been able to otherwise. The thing about this situation was that the wife was still working and would have to for at least another 6 years and this fact caused her considerable stress and she dwelt on it. She talked about the unfairness of it. She blamed him for the fact that his income had not been adequate to support both of them through an early retirement. She blamed him for her unhappiness and found fault with him endlessly. And this was despite the fact that he'd always been a hard worker, had been faithful as a husband, had treated her children as his own, and had provided a lovely home. And yet, when he retired he became her punching bag. She could not cope with the idea of it; she could not seem to feel anything but bitterness. Three years following his retirement, to everyone's surprise, he died of cancer.
It would seem that this lady spent years feeling disappointment and anger, over nothing. Things didn't work out as she had hoped, but it's very sad that she couldn't find a way to cope with her feelings. And while we don't want to judge her, we certainly don't want to follow her example.
To be sure, it's an extreme example: Most people, I think, are aware of and do acknowledge that they have things to be thankful for even when circumstances aren't ideal. But isn't it true that many of us at some point in our lives have spent time basically sorrowing over nothing? The Bible tells us there is a time in life for happiness and there is a time for mourning. I believe that once the time for sadness has passed, it is time to move on. Have you failed at something you had hoped to do well at? Have you missed an opportunity you had desperately wanted? Has someone walked out of your life when you had wanted them to stay? Well, don't forget God's love for you. If you can truly realize that and keep a relationship with Him you have every reason to be encouraged. God is not forgetful of our life's concerns and there is nothing just left to chance in the life of a Christian. We can rest assured that He will handle it. And remember that we don't see the future in a way which gives us the ability to predict all events, such as with the lady in the story above. She had no idea that her husband had only three years of life left. But God knew that, most assuredly. Let's remember to be thankful for what we have and realize there is a bigger picture we don't see and "a time to every purpose under the heaven." (Ecclesiastes 3)